SEC(2011) 172 final
COMMISSION STAFF WORKING DOCUMENT
Report on the implementation of the recommendations of the High Level Group on the
Competitiveness of the European Chemicals Industry
In 2007 the Commission set up a High Level Group (HLG) on the Competitiveness of the
European Chemicals Industry1 in order to “conduct economic and statistical analysis of the
factors determining the structural changes in the chemicals industry” and “to formulate a set
of policy recommendations addressed to policy makers, industry and civil society
In February 2009, the HLG adopted its final report (HLG Report) including 39 policy
recommendations2, which were agreed unanimously and addressed to a wide range of actors,
including the Commission services, Member States and regional authorities, as well as
industry and other stakeholders.
In May 2009 the Competitiveness Council adopted conclusions on the HLG Report and
invited the Commission to report – in close consultation with all stakeholders - on the
implementation of the recommendations by the end of 2010. This report is based on
information the Commission has collected through a series of meetings with individual
stakeholders and a workshop on 15 September 2010 and presents a selection of the main
activities implementing the recommendations of the HLG – a more comprehensive overview
is presented in the annex to this Commission Staff Working Paper.
2. SETTING THE SCENE
The chemicals industry is at the basis of most industrial value chains. It is not only an
important economic sector in its own right but has a key role as a major innovation motor for
the whole economy and a solution provider for most societal challenges identified in the
Europe 2020 Strategy. It is, therefore, a key contributor to most of the Strategy’s Flagship
Initiatives. At the same time, an adequate regulatory framework and good corporate
governance are necessary to avoid adverse effects of chemicals on human health and the
The chemicals industry has been one of the manufacturing sectors most affected by the
economic crisis, largely due to the severe downturn in its most important customer sectors
(automotive, construction, machine tools producers).
The worst point of the crisis was reached at the end of 2008. Since January 2009, sales and
production levels have been steadily recovering, without however reaching pre-crisis levels.
The chemicals industry registered in 2009 -18.3% in sales and -11.3% compared to 2008. In
2009, 59,000 jobs out of 1.2 million were lost, around 35,000 of which were due to the
economic crisis. When considering the first ten months of 2010, output in the EU chemicals
industry experienced an increase of 11.3% compared to the same period of 2009.
With a trade surplus up to € 35.6 billion in the first nine months of 2010 (€ 3.1 billion more
than in Jan-Aug 2009), the European chemicals industry remains highly competitive on a
Commission Decision 2007/418/EC of 14 June 2007 setting up the High Level Group on the
Competitiveness of the Chemicals Industry in the European Union (http://eur-
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global scale. Nevertheless, the crisis has accelerated the reshaping of the world chemicals
markets. Strong growth in some emerging countries – most notably China and India - creates
new market opportunities but also new competing industries benefitting from lower costs and
proximity to growing markets. Moreover, in the petrochemicals industry, the Middle East has
emerged as an important player, benefitting from lower raw materials costs. As a result, the
share of the European chemicals industry in sales worldwide fell from 29% in 2007 to 24% in
Against this background, the implementation of the HLG recommendations becomes even
more important to foster the global competitiveness of the European chemicals industry.
3. INNOVATION AND RESEARCH
One of the strongest points of the European chemical industry is its integration into research
and innovation networks and clusters, often multi-locational and strongly interlinked with
major downstream industries. European Technology Platforms (ETPs) provide a framework
for stakeholders to define research and innovation priorities, roadmaps and plans. Innovation
Partnerships under the Innovation Union3 flagship initiative of the Europe 2020 strategy can
integrate the work of ETPs and improve the market uptake of innovative products.
The ETP for sustainable chemistry SusChem has been successful in orientating research
initiatives and supporting the participation of chemical companies in EU R&D programmes.
SusChem refocused its activities and now covers the full knowledge triangle research,
innovation and education. Recognising that innovation has to start simultaneously at various
stages of the value chain, SusChem has increased co-operation with relevant partners to
address sustainability across sectors and underlined the importance of expanding this
integrated approach through an active involvement in the upcoming Innovation Partnerships.
The UK established a Chemicals Innovation Knowledge Transfer Network4 (CIKTN) in
2006 to stimulate and support product and process innovation in the UK chemicals-using
industries. In Italy, the Technological Innovation Fund5 finances experimental development
in start up companies.
Many regions have developed policies to support clusters. There is also increasing
international co-operation between clusters, such as those between Axelera (Lyon) and
Chemie-Cluster Bayern (Munich) or Flanders, Limburg and North Rhine-Westphalia.
Nevertheless, information on the key factors for success of particular clusters or chemicals
regions is still limited. ChemClust is a 1.7m € project of the European Chemical Regions
Network (ECRN) with 10 chemical regions in 7 Member States, co-financed by Interreg IIIC.
The three-year initiative started at the end of 2009 to improve the effectiveness of regional
development policies within innovation and cluster policies.
The European Cluster Observatory6 provides a wide variety of data, e.g. mapping of
regional clusters, policy reports, case studies, an analysis of which might allow criteria for
success, to be identified.
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There is a very wide range of research and innovation activities, both in the private and the
public sectors. However, the EU still lags behind some other world regions both in terms of
R&D spending (in particular by the private sector) and effectiveness in turning knowledge
into new products and services. It is one of the main objectives of the Innovation Union to
strengthen every link in the innovation chain, from research to commercialisation.
The Lead Market Initiative7 intended to speed up and facilitate the translation of
technological and non-technological innovation into commercial products and services
through prioritised regulation, public procurement, standardisation and additional supporting
activities. It covered six sectors, most of which (bio-based products, sustainable construction,
recycling, protective textiles, renewable energies) are strongly linked to the chemicals
The Key Enabling Technologies8 (KETs) initiative intends to ensure the deployment of
technologies to facilitate the transition of the EU’s industrial base to a knowledge-based, low
carbon and resource-efficient economy. The European chemicals industry is fully involved in:
nanotechnology, micro and nano-electronics, advanced materials, bio-technology, photonics,
advanced manufacturing systems and carbon capture and storage. A High Level Group on
KETs has been set up and started its work in July 2010 in order to provide policy
recommendations and concrete proposals.
Under the initiative FIT-REACH, Italy has allocated 120 million € from its Technological
Innovation Fund to support projects of experimental development, including industrial
research, on product and/or process innovation aimed at substituting or eliminating
Substances of Very High Concern, as defined in the REACH Regulation.
The Centre for Process Innovation9 (North East England) is an open access innovation
centre for the chemistry and process industries. CPI has helped hundreds of businesses and
created over 12 new businesses of its own. It has helped in creating and preserving 3,350 jobs,
worked with over 850 SMEs, created over 30 new products and helped leverage £545m of
private sector investment.
The chemical industry has made progress in implementing a more effective dialogue with
society. Nevertheless, gaining the confidence of all stakeholders in the sustainability and
safety of chemical products and processes requires continued and long-term efforts.
The Dutch Chemical Industry Association (VNCI) has launched the initiative “Chemistry is
everywhere”10, explaining the importance of chemistry and the solutions it can provide for the
social problems of today and tomorrow. The UK Chemicals Stakeholder Forum with
members from all stakeholder groups advises on how industry should reduce the risks to
human health and the environment from hazardous chemicals.
The protection of Intellectual Property Rights and an efficient system to gain and enforce
them remains a major strategic concern for the European chemicals industry. In 2009 the
Council adopted a General Approach and conclusions on an enhanced patent system for
Communication from the Commission “A lead market initiative for Europe”, COM(2007) 860 final
Communication from the Commission "Preparing for our future: Developing a common strategy for key
enabling technologies in the EU", COM(2009) 512 final
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Europe including a common patent court structure, a common understanding on renewal fees
and partnership arrangements between patent offices11. Despite initial progress, the Council
failed to reach agreement on a unified EU patent regime due to an inability to agree on
translation requirements. Following failure to reach agreement, a group of Member States
requested that the Commission prepare a proposal for a Council Decision to continue work on
a unified patent in a smaller group of Member States via enhanced cooperation. The Council
will consider the proposal in 2011. Work on a unified patent court has been suspended
pending an opinion by the European Court of Justice on the compatibility of the court with the
European Treaties. The opinion is expected to be published by March 2011.
In the fight against counterfeiting and piracy, the Commission has issued two
Communications on industrial property rights12 and IPR enforcement13 and set up a European
Observatory on Counterfeiting and Piracy.
The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement14 (ACTA) is a multilateral agreement (agreed in
December 2010) for the purpose of establishing international standards on intellectual
property rights enforcement15.
4. HUMAN RESOURCES
There is a need to attract more talented people to studies related to science and to
innovation management. Studies and vocational training should address the future skills
needed by companies and provide knowledge about science, technology and business reality.
There are many interesting initiatives by authorities and/or companies and industry
associations to provide practical tools and better understanding of chemistry and company
reality which could inspire initiatives in other parts of the EU:
From primary schools…
The Chemical Industry Association of Hesse has developed a wide range of initiatives to
increase children’s knowledge of science and chemistry through scientific experiments,
involving also teachers and families.
…to higher studies…
The Ministry for Innovation, Science, and Research of North Rhine-Westphalia launched the
project “Zukunft durch Innovation” (Future through innovation) implementing a wide range
of initiatives inviting young people to explore their technical and scientific talents.
… to University
Council document 17229/09
Communication from the Commission “An Industrial Property Rights Strategy for Europe” COM(2008)
Communication from the Commission “Enhancing the enforcement of intellectual property rights in the
internal market”, COM(2009) 467 final
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Since 2000, the Christian-Albrechts-Universität in Kiel has offered a study program called
"Wirtschaftschemie" (business chemistry) which combines chemistry and business
In 2009 the Commission presented a set of measures to develop and strengthen the
University-Business Dialogue as part of a wider effort to support the modernisation of higher
education16 and proposed to expand the role of its University-Business Forum, which has met
annually since 200817.
The “New Skills for New Jobs” initiative intends to address skills needs by building stronger
bridges between education and training and the work environments. Concrete
recommendations have been provided by a group of independent high-level experts18. Two
studies, one by the Commission19 and another by CEFIC20, analyse future skills needs in the
The Commission set up a thematic working group currently composed of 19 European
countries21, around the specific theme of “Maths, Sciences and Technology (MST)” to
improve participation in MST studies and careers.
The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) and UNESCO designated
2011 as the International Year of Chemistry22. The European Association for Chemical and
Molecular Sciences (EuCheMS) is the European coordinating partner. The goals of IYC2011
are to improve the public image of chemistry, create interest in chemistry among young
people and to underline the critical role it plays in a sustainable future. The Commission plans
to mark IYC2011 through a number of activities.
Regulation remains of key importance for the chemicals industry. It needs to strike a balance
between protecting public interest and limiting costs and administrative burden for
As part of its Better Regulation initiative, the Commission has extended the use of impact
assessments and has introduced an Impact Assessment Board to scrutinise the quality of
impact assessments across the Commission. Impact assessments have been prepared for all
recent major initiatives in the chemicals area, involving stakeholders from the outset.
Commission Communication "A new partnership for the modernisation of universities: the EU Forum
for University Business Dialogue", http://eur-
Report of the last meeting: http://ec.europa.eu/education/higher-
“New Skills for New Jobs: Action Now - A report by the Expert Group on New Skills for New Jobs”
“Investing in the Future of Jobs and Skills Scenarios, implications and options in anticipation of future
skills and knowledge needs - Sector Report - Chemicals, Pharmaceuticals, Rubber & Plastic Products”,
May 2009 http://ec.europa.eu/social/main.jsp?langId=en&catId=782&newsId=555&furtherNews=yes
AT, BE, BG, CY, CZ, DE, DK, EE, ES,, IE, LV, MT, NL, NO, PT, SE, SK, TR, UK
EN 6 EN
Major efforts have been made to improve the understanding of regulation. For example,
under REACH and CLP extensive guidance has been prepared with close involvement of the
chemicals industry. ECHA information activities include stakeholder events, webinars and
assistance online, a newsletter, workshops and the publication of short practical guides. The
network of the REACH National Help Desks answered more than 7.500 inquiries in 2009. In
order to address critical questions and find practical solutions, a so-called Directors Contact
Group has been set up, involving representatives from the chemicals industry, the
Commission services and ECHA.
There is still more work to do to streamline and increase coherence between different pieces
of legislation. As a recent example, the Commission has proposed to align REACH and RoHS
procedures with regard to restricting hazardous substances in the RoHS recast, which has
eventually been supported by the Council and the European Parliament. The Commission has
launched a study in the preparation of the review of the scope of REACH by 1 June 2012 as
mandated by Article 138 (6) and has invited all stakeholders to contribute.
The Commission has also stepped up its work regarding more harmonised and correct
application of agreed rules by monitoring closely infringements and complaints.
6. ENERGY AND RAW MATERIALS
Reliable access to raw materials and energy at fair prices is crucial for the competitiveness
of the chemicals industry. Progress has been made on a number of initiatives relating to
improvements of infrastructure and efficiency of markets. Nevertheless, the EU's dependency
on external supplies remains critical and further efforts are needed to stabilise supplies in co-
operation with trading partners and Member States.
In July 2009, the Commission proposed a new Regulation on security of gas supply23
addressing weaknesses that became evident in the 2009 gas crisis.
Also in July 2009, the third Internal Energy Market Package24 was adopted. It aims at
making open markets more effective in achieving the lowest possible energy prices while
guaranteeing better energy security and sustainability.
The European Energy Programme for Recovery25 (EEPR) of 2009 provided 2.365 bn € to
31 gas and 12 electricity projects.
In 2010 the Commission submitted a report on measures to safeguard the security of
electricity supply and infrastructure investment26. It provides a positive assessment of
network capacity and generation in the short term while in the medium/long term large
investments will be necessary.
In spring 2010, the Commission adopted new transparency rules to ensure effective access
to natural gas transmission systems and to provide a minimum guarantee of equal market
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access conditions in practice27. The Commission is currently preparing a new Energy
Infrastructure Package, which will build upon the current TEN-E (Trans-European energy
In 2008 the Commission launched the Raw Materials Initiative aiming at undistorted access
to raw materials, sustainable supply from domestic sources and resource efficiency and
recycling. A new Communication in 2011 will outline the future development of this
In line with the EU 2020 objective of building a bio-based economy, the chemicals industry
needs to progressively shift its raw material basis towards renewables. This is complex
and will require time, in-depth research and substantial investments. Subsidies for the use of
renewables as fuel and import tariffs on renewables affect their availability as feedstock for
the chemicals industry. Moreover, stability and predictability of subsidies as well as long-term
profitability of subsidized products and projects remain important. However, progress on
these issues is often slow due to the need to strike a balance between different and often
competing interests of various stakeholders.
In the framework of the Lead Market Initiative, an ad-hoc Advisory Group provided
specific recommendations for the development of the market for bio-based products. The
Commission issued two standardisation mandates to CEN and published Green Public
Research into biorefineries has been supported by the 7th Framework Programme for
Research and Development (FP7). A coordination and support action was launched in 2009
and three large research projects started in 2010.
The BioChem project, co-financed by Europe Innova, started in 2010. It supports companies
to enter the emerging market for bio-based products in the chemicals sector.
Improvements to the transport systems and infrastructure for chemicals will be important
factors for keeping the chemicals industry in the EU or to attract new investments.
Sustainability and chemical safety, as well as a well-managed dialogue with the public are
essential to get acceptance for such improvements.
ChemLog29 - Chemical Logistics Cooperation in Central and Eastern Europe - is a
cooperation project between regional authorities, chemical industry associations and scientific
institutions from Germany, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Italy to
improve framework conditions for supply chain management in Central and Eastern Europe.
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The Commission adopted a Communication on the Future of Transport30 in June 2009,
aiming at identifying policy options for the next White Paper on a European Transport Policy,
expected in 2011.
In the framework of railway freight policies, the Commission has proposed a Regulation
concerning a rail network for competitive freight, which foresees the establishment of nine
international railway corridors with favourable conditions for freight train traffic within the
next 3-5 years31. A study on Single Wagonload Traffic is in preparation32.
A new Regulation on access to the international road haulage market33 entered into force in
May 2010. Along with the Directive on road charging34 (Eurovignette) which is currently
being revised, this Regulation aims at reducing the number of empty lorries on European
roads and to ease road traffic congestion. The Commission is also carrying out studies to
assess the costs and benefits of increasing the mass and/or size of trucks.
In the context of the Freight Transport Logistics Action Plan35, the Commission launched a
“bottleneck exercise” in cooperation with industry.
In December 2008 the Commission adopted the Action Plan for the deployment of Intelligent
Transport Systems36 (ITS) in the field of road transport and for interfaces with other
transport modes (the ITS Action Plan), in order to coordinate and accelerate their
deployment and therefore make road transport in the EU more sustainable, efficient and clean.
Its associated legal instrument, the ITS Directive, has been adopted in July 201037.
8. CLIMATE CHANGE
The chemicals industry is a major provider of solutions to fight climate change by providing
materials for insulation, generation of energy from renewable sources, storage and transport
of energy and capture of CO2. It is also a major consumer of fossil fuels and has to continue
efforts to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions where possible.
In line with the provisions of the ETS Directive, in December 2009 large parts of the
chemicals industry were deemed to be exposed to a significant risk of carbon leakage38. On
the basis of a thorough evaluation of emission and production data, the Commission has
presented a draft Decision determining transitional Union-wide rules for the harmonised free
allocation of emission allowances pursuant to Article 10a of Directive 2003/87/EC, including
COM(2009) 279, http://eur-
Single wagon load is a flexible system which allows companies to choose how many wagons he wants
to dispatch instead of running a block train
COM (2008)436, http://eur-
COM (2007)607 http://eur-
COM (2008)886 http://eur-
Directive 2010/40/EU http://eur-lex.europa.eu/JOHtml.do?uri=OJ:L:2010:207:SOM:EN:HTML
Commission Decision 2010/2/EC http://eur-
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benchmarks for 15 chemical products in a manner that sets an incentive for further reduction
of GHG emissions while providing for the necessary free allocation of emission certificates to
avoid carbon leakage. In December 2010, the Member States approved the draft Decision in
the Climate Change Committee.
Even though the Copenhagen Accord fell short of the EU's expectations, it continues efforts at
international level to engage other countries to take on more ambitious climate actions, and
consequently level the playing field between producers in the EU and other countries. The
Commission published a Communication in May 2010 revising the estimated costs of the
20% reduction target, and assessing options and costs for moving to 30%. In the absence of a
global agreement on binding reduction targets, the Commission is considering further studies
on sectoral approaches, some of which concern the chemicals industry (oil refining,
fertilisers, inorganic chemicals).
The European chemicals industry operates globally and fair access to raw materials and
markets is essential.
The EU pursued its efforts to obtain agreement in the WTO Doha Development Agenda
negotiations despite of some reluctance from major trading partners. Discussions on the
sectoral proposal on chemical tariffs liberalisation and negotiations on trade facilitation have
been ongoing, and the Commission will continue to make all efforts to bring these
negotiations to a successful conclusion and secure the participation of all major actors.
More progress has been made with regard to Free Trade Agreements (FTA). The new FTA
with the Republic of Korea will significantly improve access of the EU chemicals industry
to this important market, inter alia by including a mediation and dispute settlement
mechanism and will serve as a model for future FTAs. Other ongoing negotiations of
importance for the chemicals industry, notably with Ukraine, India, Canada and Singapore are
making progress and negotiations with MERCOSUR have been reopened.
The Commission services are examining how to address practices detrimental to the
chemicals industry such as double pricing, and will continue applying trade defence
instruments where justified.
In 2009, the Commission compiled an inventory of trade barriers for raw materials and
assessed their economic impact. Increased efforts to fight these barriers include a WTO case
on Chinese export restrictions on certain key raw materials for the chemicals industry and
During the Swedish Presidency of the Trade Policy Committee, the Commission analyzed
the main impediments to trade faced by the chemicals industry and identified a range of
follow-up actions. Amongst them, the Commission set up a Market Access Working Group
on chemicals to agree on action and strategies to remove such trade impediments.
The Commission worked to find stable and low cost access to bio-based raw materials to
meet the trade interests of the EU and to balance the needs of producers and users of these
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Difficulties experienced by EU economic operators in their dealings with certain customs
authorities have also been regularly discussed in the relevant bilateral customs cooperation
This report and its annex, which contains for each recommendation of the HLG a more
detailed list of actions, have identified a very wide range of initiatives taken by the
Commission, the Member States, Chemical Regions, industry and other stakeholders in the
context of the implementation of the HLG recommendations. Even though several activities
had already been launched before 2009, the HLG recommendations have served
to get a comprehensive overview of all relevant actions and initiatives,
to better understand the role and relevance of the chemical industry and
to reinforce efforts to maintain and strengthen the attractiveness of the EU for the
chemicals industry while ensuring safety and sustainability of chemicals.
Most of the actions and initiatives are mid- to long-term and it is rather early to draw
conclusions on which recommendations have been implemented most successfully. However,
it is fair to say that implementation is still rather uneven, both in terms of individual
recommendations and actors involved.
There have been a lot of new developments in innovation policy and networks, initiatives to
better interlink energy infrastructures and to more concretely identify and address trade
barriers. On the other end, progress in other areas such as intellectual property rights, global
or sectoral agreements on climate change, transport and logistics, or multilateral trade
negotiations has been slow. However, it has to be recognised that progress often depends on
factors outside the direct influence of authorities and stakeholders dealing with chemicals
The level of implementation in the various Member States or regions is very uneven. Whereas
this can to a certain degree be explained through the presence or absence of significant
chemicals industries, there is clearly scope to make better use of best practice examples and
evaluate, transfer and adapt these practices to Member States and regions which have so far
been less active.
The recommendations of the HLG are still valid as a roadmap for the competitiveness of the
European chemicals industry. Their further implementation will take place in the new context
of the Commission's Europe 2020 Strategy and its flagships initiatives, such as “Innovation
Union”, “Resource efficient Europe”, “An industrial policy for the globalisation era” and “An
agenda for new skills and jobs”. The follow-up of the implementation of the HLG
recommendations has been identified as an action under the Industrial Policy
COM (2010) 614
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This Annex provides a comprehensive overview of the activities implementing the
recommendations of the HLG, including also more detailed information and references of
those mentioned in the main part of the Staff Working Paper.
On the basis of the available information, several Member States have organised a follow-up
to the recommendations of the HLG at national level:
Belgium set up a High Level Group on the chemicals industry to analyse at national level
the implementation of the HLG Recommendations. The Belgian HLG was organised
around five topics: innovation, energy, logistics, taxation and employment. The group has
presented a Memorandum for the future Government.
A High Level Working Group on the Chemicals Industry (HLWG) has been set up by the
Ministry of Industry and Trade (MIT) and the Association of the Chemicals Industry in
2009 in the Czech Republic to search for an exit strategy from the economic crisis in the
chemicals industry and to propose recommendations to mitigate the impacts of the
recession. In May 2010, a conference on the conclusions and the recommendations of the
HLWG has been organised with the participation of 80 experts.
Germany has organised a number of activities that culminated with a national conference
on the implementation of the recommendations of the High Level Group, organized in
Berlin on July 1, 2010
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The implementation of the HLG recommendations
1. INNOVATION AND RESEARCH
1 Industry, in cooperation with governments, Member States
should set up topical innovation networks to CZ: Czech technological platform for bio-components: co-financed by the Czech Industry
promote key strategic innovations and foster best Agency in the frame of technological platforms programme
practices and exchange of knowledge and
experience between them. One such network UK: CIKTN – Chemistry Innovation Knowledge Transfer Network40 established in 2006 to
should deal with ‘energy and climate change’ stimulate and support product and process innovation in the UK chemistry-using industries
Chemie-Cluster Bayern - Chemical Assisted Living41 (Bavaria) : a contact and competence
network for all areas in which chemical products make a sustainable contribution to improve
quality of daily life, e.g. e-mobility, renewable energy, CO2 prevention, new materials, building
chemistry and polymer chemistry.
Baxel: cooperation and staff exchange between Chemie-Cluster (Bavaria) and Axelera (Rhône-
Wilton Innovation Connector in the Wilton Chemical Site (North East England): in 2009 was
formed the Innovation Accelerator, hosted by the Centre for Process Industry on the Wilton
Chemical Site. Its goal is to assist SMES and stimulate innovation amongst North East process
industry by encouraging new business growth. The construction of an incubator at the Wilton
site, designed specifically for new process industry start-ups will has beeen completed in 2010.
Community outreach and visitor engagement centre and a training centre are additional projects
for which funding has still to be found.
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Elastopôle: Rubber and polymers competitiveness cluster, France, aims to harness the strengths
of industry, science and universities in the rubber and polymer industry. The goal is to promote
business and employment through innovative technological developments covering the whole
product life cycle: raw material, applications, process and environment. Four regions have been
engaged: Pays de la Loire, Auvergne, Ile de France and Centre region42.
Axelera: this association was created by the cluster’s founding members, namely Arkema,
CNRS, IFP, Rhodia and Suez, to act as the vehicle for the “Lyon Rhône-Alpes Chemicals and
Environment competitiveness cluster” project. The activities of the cluster, which has more than
170 members to date, are focused on 12 R&D (Research & Developments) programs,
implementation and equipment projects and 'Strategy and Prospective' missions43.
2 Industry and public authorities at all levels should Regions
strengthen clusters (and open innovation ChemClust (10 partners, 7 Member states): it is a three year initiative of the European Chemical
processes) which facilitate cooperation across Regions Network (ECRN) established as a result of an INTERREG IIIC project. ChemClust’s
sectors and across borders, with the aim of further objective is to improve the effectiveness of regional development policies in the area of
stimulating, accelerating and facilitating cross- innovation and cluster policies for the chemical sector by interregional cooperation and
cutting innovation throughout the value chain. exchange of best practice44.
Humber Chemical Focus ltd45 (HCF) runs a number of conferences, events and network groups
as well as community liaison panels. The purpose of the network groups is to bring members
together to discuss topical issues, share best practice and to ensure positive progression of the
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Humber Chemical Industry within the region (Humber, UK)
Yorkshire Chemical Focus Limited46, (YCF) is a not-for-profit company funded in 2005 by
Regional Development Agency Yorkshire Forward, and industry members to provide an
independent voice for chemical and related businesses in Yorkshire. (Yorkshire, UK)
Plastiwin47: vertically integrated plastic cluster (Wallonia) brings together three key players in
the plastics industry (manufacturers of raw materials, designers of molds, tooling and
machinery, processors such as injectors, extruders, blowers, etc.) to facilitate contacts, the
establishment of commercial partnerships and innovation.
3 As part of further strengthening existing Regions
networks, the technology platform SusChem Proof of Concept Programme48, from research in labs to marketplace (Scotland): The Proof of
should explore opportunities beyond the defined Concept Programme helps researchers from Scotland's universities, research institutes and NHS
key areas to include innovation leadership issues Boards export their ideas and inventions from the lab to the global marketplace and create new
(‘bringing good ideas to the market’) in a new sustainable businesses for Scotland. It supports the pre-commercialisation of leading-edge
SusChem+ structure. technologies emerging from Scotland's universities, research institutes and National Health
FISCH – Flanders Strategic Initiative for Sustainable Chemistry49 (now SusChem Flanders -
Flanders) targets the creation of a Flemish platform for sustainable chemistry, where small,
medium and large companies, associations, knowledge centres, service provides, authorities and
investment companies co-operate in an open way on experiments, programmes and projects
related to sustainable chemistry.
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SusChem50 Cooperation with other technology platforms: “Water Supply and Sanitation
Technology Platform” in the project “Re-thinking water as a resource” and “Advanced
Engineering Materials and Technologies”. SusChem is the only technology platform having 11
national platforms enabling an effective alignment for innovation partnership proposals.
4 Private sector should increase efforts to speed up Industry
innovation Investment in R&D and innovation has been kept almost at pre-crisis levels during the economic
downturn, at least in large companies.
European Sustainable Chemistry Award: has been launched by EuCheMS51 (European
Association for Chemical and Molecular Sciences) in order to raise the profile of sustainable
chemistry and be a spur to innovation and competitiveness52.
5 Public sector should provide effective support to European Union
private sector efforts Communication from the Commission “A lead market initiative for Europe”, COM(2007)860
final53: The Lead Market Initiative is the European policy for 6 important sectors (eHealth,
sustainable construction, protective textiles, bio-based products, recycling and renewable
energies) that are supported by actions (Standardisation Labelling Certification, Legislation,
Public procurement and Complementary Actions) to lower barriers to bring new products or
services onto the market. The European Commission, Member States and industry work together
to carry out the action plans for the 6 Lead Markets.
Communication from the Commission "Preparing for our future: Developing a common
strategy for key enabling technologies in the EU", COM(2009)512 final54. Key enabling
technologies (KETs) are an important factor in the industrial and economic future as they can be
EN 16 EN
used to improve the industrial capacities of the EU, enhance the competitiveness and
sustainability of the EU’s economy, and enable the EU to fulfil its ambition of becoming a
principal player when facing global societal challenges. The EC identified nanotechnology,
micro- and nanoelectronics, photonics, advanced materials and biotechnology as KETs.
These technologies need to be developed further to help the EU better address global societal
challenges. These technologies may help the development of energy efficient and low carbon
technologies that will help the EU reach its energy and climate change targets. Due to potential
scientific concerns regarding safety aspects as well as social concerns legitimate health and
environmental consequences of these KETs need to be addressed upfront.
The flagship initiative “Innovation Union” 55 sets outs a comprehensive innovation strategy for
Europe focussed on major areas of concern for citizens. It pursues a broad concept of
innovation, involving all actors and all regions in the innovation cycle in order to: make Europe
into a world-class science performer; revolutionize the way public and private sectors work
together, notably through Innovation Partnerships; and remove bottlenecks – like expensive
patenting, market fragmentation, slow standard setting and skill shortages - that currently
prevent ideas getting quickly to market.
AT: financing to R&D and clusters: Austrian Centre for Industrial Biotechnology56; Action Plan
BE: fiscal benefits for innovation, patents, R&D
ES: Innpacto, financial support to cooperative projects to promote cooperation between
enterprises and R&D public agents57; Programme to foster competitiveness of strategic
industries (chemical industry included);
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FI: National Innovation Strategy58 sets the political framework; Finnish Funding Agency for
Technology and Innovation59 and Academy of Finland60 most important financing bodies;
Strategic Centres for Science, Technology and Innovation61 public-private partnerships for
speeding up innovation processes.
IT: FIT REACH: in March 2009, the Ministry of Economic Development launched a tender of
the Technological Innovation Fund, to support projects of experimental development, including
a smaller part of industrial research, concerning product and/or process innovation aimed at
substituting or eliminating Substances of Very High Concern, as defined in the REACH
Regulation. Companies, predominantly downstream users, submitted 136 project proposals
totalling about 150 million € and mainly focussing on chromium, formaldehyde and phenol free
leather applications and PFOA and PFOS free applications in the textile industry. Through the
same Fund, the Ministry of Economic Development launched another tender in July 2009 in
order to finance (with both grants and loans) projects of experimental development for product
and/or process innovation by medium and high-tech start ups including also in the chemicals
IT: RIDITT62: the Italian Ministry of Economic Development has been funding and promoting
since 2003 the RIDITT Programme, an initiative aimed at improving the competitiveness of the
national productive system by strengthening and integrating the available supply of services for
innovation. RIDITT has several actions lines such as information services, technical assistance,
training services, funds for technology incubators and funds to promote the vertical (along the
value chain) and horizontal (technological) clustering of industrial association and technology
centres to develop research, development or innovation projects. From 2007 to 2010 RIDITT
has been further strengthened by enhancing technology transfer from the research system to
enterprises and supporting the setting up of high technology enterprises.
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NL: TASC - Technology Areas for Sustainable Chemistry: R&D programme on catalysis and
PT: Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia63 (FCT) supports R&D activities in all fields;
involved in pilot project with the International Union for Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC)
for transcontinental research; Operational Programme for Competitiveness Factors provides a
range of incentives to private investment; Competitiveness and Technology Centre (PCT) for the
Refining, Petrochemical and Industrial Chemicals Industries (with Associação das Indústrias da
Petroquímica, Química e Refinação)
UK: Chemistry Innovation KTN64 (provides a national focus and stimulus to drive improved
innovation performance across the UK chemistry-using industries) National Composites
Centre65 (part of the 2009 UK Government “Composites Strategy” and brings together
companies and enterprising academics to develop new technologies for the design and rapid
manufacture of high-quality composite products) Nanotechnology Strategy for the UK66 (the UK
Government supports innovation and promotion of the use of these technologies in a safe,
responsible and sustainable way reflecting the needs of the public, industry and academia. It.
published in 2010 “UK Nanotechnologies Strategy: Small Technologies, Great Opportunities”
identifying a number of actions under four categories: Business, Industry and Innovation;
Environmental, Health and Safety Research; Regulation; The Wider World).
Innovation through Collaboration67 (Scotland). Developed by Scottish Enterprise, the
Innovation through Collaboration (ITC) project specifically supports the chemicals sciences
sector. The ITC project supported the facilitation of collaborative research and development
projects to offer growth potential for Scottish companies. New product and market opportunities
were explored based around equipment/skills/knowledge available within the Scottish company
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base and/or Higher Education. The project was evaluated in 2009 and this indicated considerable
success in encouraging collaboration with 58 connections made and under development, 20
Innovation audits carried out, and 3 large scale projects in progress to date .This has as resulted
in a new revised programme being developed for and with Industry to ensure collaborative
development projects can continue to be facilitated and grown. It is anticipated this will be
launched early in 2011.
Project Crystal (Scotland): aims to establish a world leading, industry led Centre of Excellence
(named CMAC, Continuous Manufacturing and Crystallisation Centre) dedicated to the creation
and delivery of market driven expertise in continuous manufacturing and crystallisation. It is
aimed primarily at application in the pharmaceutical, fine-chemicals and high tech consumer
products fields. The Centre will bring together academic excellence in fundamental and applied
research, supply chain technology innovators and a variety of end-users, to create breakthrough
continuous manufacturing platforms.
Proof of Concept Programme68: refer to recommendation 3 for more information.
Centre for Process Innovation69 (North East England). It is a technology innovation centre that
uses market knowledge and technology understanding to develop and prototype products and
processes quickly and efficiently with minimal risk to its public and private sector partners. CPI
works in the innovation space between the discovery of an idea and the delivery of a product or
service to the commercial market. It has far outgrown its regional beginnings and has created a
national and international reputation in two main technology areas one of which is Advanced
Manufacturing for the Process Industries. CPI develops advanced manufacturing technologies
for high value chemicals, carbon capture and pharmaceuticals. This business unit is home to the
National Industrial Biotechnology Facility (NIBF).
Plan Marshall 2.Vert70: 6th Competitiveness Pole Environmental Technologies71 (Wallonie). It
aims at consolidating scientific research in cooperation with the governments of Région de
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Bruxelles-Capitale and of the Fédération Wallonie-Bruxelles. One of the envisaged actions is
WILL (Walloon Institute for Leadership in Life Sciences).
Science4Life Venture Cup72: support to start ups (Hesse). Science4Life has been running since
1998. It is an association initiated and supported by the government of Hesse, the company
Sanofi-Aventis and about 100 other companies and institutions, forming a network of expertise
from all over Germany. Next to providing information and seminars helpful for start ups it
organizes a yearly competition in which start ups and young entrepreneurs are awarded fo.r their
innovative business ideas in the field of life sciences and chemistry. The goal of the project is to
get young entrepreneurs together with experts and so help to transform new ideas into successful
Alliance Hessen-Nanotech73 (Hesse): The alliance Hessen-Nanotech of the Hessian Ministry of
Economy is the regional platform for communication and cooperation in order to strengthen the
innovation capabilities of the Hessian companies in this sector. Activities include the provision
of information on current developments in the field of nanotechnology, brochures and seminars
and workshops. For companies and universities, the platform offers free marketing, the
participation of experts in events, congresses and fairs, and free initial advice including the
search for partners for cooperation. Hessen-Nanotech also supports different clusters and co-
operations, such as the Hessian NanoNetwork in which five universities and five universities of
applied sciences are working together.
FISCH - Flemish Strategic Initiative for Sustainable Chemistry (now SusChem Flanders -
Flanders) targets the creation of a Flemish platform for sustainable chemistry, where small,
medium and large companies, associations, knowledge centres, service provides, authorities and
investment companies co-operate in an open way on experiments, programmes and projects
related to sustainable chemistry.
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6 The chemicals industry needs to develop a more Member States
effective dialogue with society based on mutual ES: Forum on Chemistry and Society (established 2005) to establish a permanent dialogue
understanding and trust between chemical stakeholders and society74; Chemicals Day: 8 editions so far, to promote and
raise awareness about chemicals75.
UK Chemicals Stakeholders Forum76: wide range of stakeholders with different interests come
together to explore views on the chemicals industry and provide advice to the government on
how the industry should reduce the risks from hazardous chemicals to the environment and to
human health through the environment. The Forum operates in an open and transparent manner
while respecting the need to protect commercially sensitive information provided to it.
“Chemistry is everywhere” to promote the positive image of the chemical industry in the
Netherlands (Netherlands Chemical Industry Association - VNCI)77
NanoDialogue: Enhancing dialogue on Nanotechnologies and Nanosciences in society at
European level One: co-funded by the EU under FP6 involving 8 countries78.
The International Council of Chemical Associations (ICCA) set up a portal for global chemicals
safety information, providing free public access to safety and health information on chemical
7 The Commission and Member States are European Union
encouraged to continue their efforts to reach Continue negotiations on a unified patent via enhanced cooperation.
agreement on the creation of a Community patent
and a common jurisdictional framework within
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which European and Community patents can be At the end of 2010, a Commission proposal for a language regime (“Proposal for a Council
enforced. Regulation on the translation arrangements for the European Union patent” (COM(2010) 350
final)”80) was not supported by all Member States, even with further compromises suggested by
the Belgian EU presidency. Council therefore concluded that negotiations on an EU patent had
failed to reach agreement. As a result, a group of Member States requested the Commission to
prepare a proposal for working towards a unified patent system via enhanced cooperation, which
would enable a smaller group of Member States to reach agreement of a unified patent with
smaller coverage81 82. This process would be open to all Member States who wished to participate.
Council will take a Decision on the process in early 2011.
8 The Commission and Member States should European Union
pursue international patent law harmonisation Ongoing discussions at OECD level and within IP5 (EU, US, Japan, China, Korea); US is
through the World Intellectual Property revising its patent legislation, which could facilitate harmonisation.
Organisation (WIPO) and initiatives such as the
Transatlantic Economic Council (TEC).
9 The Commission and Member States should European Union
recognise the protection of confidential business “Best Practice Project: Strengthening the IPR Enforcement of EU Industry and SMEs” (DG
information as an important IPR and ensure that ENTR, 2009): the project has drawn on the knowledge and experience of a broadly based group
the proportionality principle is systematically of experts on the management of intellectual property rights. The aim of the IPR Enforcement
applied when striking the balance between the project, then, has been to help SMEs enforce their intellectual property rights by improving the
legitimate protection of confidential business support that is available to them. This Report gives nine clear messages to policy makers and
information and other policy objectives, such as business support organisations to improve the way SMEs should enforce their intellectual
the right to know, transparency and access to property rights. Moreover it provides also an overview of the relationship between the Key
documents, as has been done, for example, in the Messages and the corresponding Recommendations and Case Studies83.
Aarhus Convention. Awareness of this IPR should
be emphasised by relevant industry associations in Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006 on REACH: protection of sensitive information is regulated in
their information activities to members and by the
Press release on enhanced cooperation: http://europa.eu/rapid/pressReleasesAction.do?reference=IP/10/1714&format=HTML&aged=0&language=EN&guiLanguage=en
Commission proposal for a Council Decision authorising enhanced cooperation: http://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/indprop/docs/patent/COM(2010)790-final_en.pdf
EN 23 EN
Commission and Member states when developing Articles 118 and 119. The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) is required to publish
innovation policies relevant to SMEs. information it holds on registered substances on the internet, except in some cases where such
information can be regarded as confidential. If the registrant submitting the information also
submits a justification as to why publishing the information would be potentially harmful to its
commercial interests the information may be withheld. The justifications will be assessed by
ECHA that has produced a manual on the content and assessments of such confidentiality
claims84. If the justification for keeping the IUPAC name of a substance that fulfils the
conditions set out in Article 119 (2) of REACH is accepted, that name will not be made publicly
available by ECHA nor will the structural information for that substance. However, an
alternative or public name will be available on the ECHA website. This will be in addition to
any other substance identifier available (e.g. a registration number). ECHA is preparing a
manual to provide rules for registrants on how to generate a public name for most substances.
Biocides: in its proposal for a Regulation concerning the placing on the market and use of
biocidal products85 of June 2009 the Commission has proposed align the confidentiality
provisions with those of REACH.
FI: IPR University Centre86: coordination of 5 universities to promote education and research on
“Intellectual property, innovation and competitiveness: a manifesto for the chemical industry”87
(Cefic). Among others, Cefic calls for the enhancement of the legal protection of confidential
business information and trade secrets and to recognise them as important IPRs. Any new
chemical legislation should align with REACH on this.
“Registrants REACH-IT Data Submission Manual - Part 16 - Confidentiality Claims: How to make confidentiality claims, and how to write Art 119(2) confidentiality claim
Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council concerning the placing on the market and use of biocidal products COM/2009/267 final
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10 The Commission and all players involved in the European Union
fight against counterfeiting and product piracy in Communication from the Commission “An Industrial Property Rights Strategy for Europe”
Member States, including European industry, COM(2008)465 final88. In July 2008, the Commission adopted a Communication on an
should cooperate to facilitate investigations and industrial property rights strategy for Europe which outlines actions to ensure Europe has a high
conduct strong enforcement activity against quality industrial property rights system in the years to come. The Communication provides a
counterfeiters in Europe and elsewhere in the horizontal strategy across the spectrum of different industrial property rights and includes
world, and develop public educational initiatives. initiatives on enforcement, innovation support for small and medium-sized enterprises, and the
quality of industrial property rights. It complements the 2007 Communication on the patent
system, which set out a way forward towards the adoption of a Community patent and an
integrated EU-wide jurisdiction for patents.
Communication from the Commission “Enhancing the enforcement of intellectual property rights
in the internal market”, COM(2009)467 final89. The European Commission adopted the
Communication on enhancing the enforcement of intellectual property rights in the internal
market to set out a series of practical initiatives to respond to the dramatic and damaging effect
that counterfeiting and piracy is having on EU economies and on society in general. The
Commission proposes to complement the existing legal framework by more focused enforcement
through greater collaboration between the private sector, national authorities and consumers,
throughout the internal market. Following this Communication, the Commission has set up the
European Observatory on Counterfeiting and Piracy.
The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement90 (ACTA) is a proposed plurilateral agreement for the
purpose of establishing international standards on intellectual property rights enforcement. ACTA
would establish a new international legal framework that countries can join on a voluntary basis
and would create its own governing body outside existing international institutions such as the
World Trade Organization (WTO), the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) or the
United Nations. The scope of ACTA includes counterfeit goods, generic medicines and copyright
infringement on the Internet. Official negotiations began in June 2008 with the participation of
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Australia, Canada, the European Union, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Morocco, New Zealand,
Singapore, Switzerland and the United States. The final text of the agreement has been agreed by
the Parties in early December 2010. The final text was released in December 201091.
11 The Commission should ensure that all relevant European Union
considerations are addressed in impact Consistent implementation of the principles of Better Regulation by the Commission – in
assessments accompanying new legislative particular through reinforced rules concerning impact assessments. The Commission has
proposals. These should include the impact on extended the use of impact assessments to ‘Comitology’ proposals with significant impact on
sustainable development, health, international stakeholders. It has introduced an Impact Assessment Board to scrutinise the quality of impact
competitiveness, SMEs and innovation. Where assessments across the Commission.
appropriate, further research needs should be
specified. The Communication "An integrated industrial policy for the globalisation era", a flagship
initiative of the Europe 2020 strategy adopted by the European Commission on the 28th of
October 2010, foresees both “fitness checks” of existing legislation, to identify the potential for
reducing the cumulative effects of legislation so as to cut the costs for businesses in Europe, and
an explicit and thorough “competitiveness proofing” of new legislation to properly analyse and
take into account the impact on competitiveness of all policy proposals.
12 The Commission and Member State authorities European Union
should improve communication with industry A broad range of support/communication initiatives on REACH, CLP and other legislation
and other stakeholders to facilitate proper concerning chemicals ECHA conducts substantial information activities to improve companies’
understanding of, and compliance with, understanding and compliance with REACH and CLP. An Internet site92, stakeholder events,
regulatory requirements. webinars and assistance online, a newsletter in 22 languages regularly sent to 10,000
subscribers, awareness campaigns, workshops and the publication of ten practical guides to help
companies comply with their obligations. The network of the REACH National Help Desk
answered in 2009 more than 7.500 inquiries.
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13 The Commission and Member States should aim European Union
to avoid unnecessary divergence of rules and Consistent implementation of the principles of Better Regulation by the Commission – in
implementation requirements while ensuring particular through increased attention to correct transposition and implementation of EU
correct application of EU rules, in order to legislation in the Member States, follow-up of complaints by companies and citizens, and
reduce the administrative burden. Regulation informal mechanisms such as SOLVIT.
should form a consistent framework and provide
a reasonably stable long term perspective. A recent example of the attempts to streamline and increase coherence between different pieces
of legislation, is the Commission’s proposal to align REACH and RoHS procedures with regard
to restricting hazardous substances in the RoHS recast, which has eventually been supported by
the Council and the European Parliament. The Commission has launched a study in the
preparation of the review by 1 June 2012 as mandated by Article 138 (6) of REACH to assess
whether or not to amend the scope of REACH to avoid overlaps with other relevant EU
legislation and has invited all stakeholders to contribute93.
FR: France has consolidated existing environmental legislation under a unique Code de
3. HUMAN RESOURCES
14 Member States should step up promotion of European Union
chemical and science education, starting with Maths, Sciences and Technology (MST): 19 European countries are participating in a thematic
primary schools. working group to improve participation in MST studies95
DE: BioTechnikum96, intends to act as a platform for information and dialogue and encourage
discussion and exchange about biotechnology. It includes an exhibition vehicle moving a
AT, BE, BG,CY, CZ, DE, DK, EE, ES, IE,LV, MT, NL, NO, PT, SE, SK, TR, UK
EN 27 EN
chemical lab to offer pupils the opportunity to run scientific tests.
ES: Conoce, since 2007 fosters the relationship between enterprises and education, promoting a
real vision of chemicals among young people. Joint initiative of the Ministry of Education and
FEIQUE ( Federación Empresarial de la Industria Química Española).
UK: STEM: education engagement and enrichment activities to inspire young people to choose
to study Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. ChemNet97: guide to students into
the chemical world (Royal Society of Chemistry).
Zukunft durch Innovation (ZDI)98 This Community initiative aims to inspire young people with
challenging opportunities to become students of engineering and natural sciences. Children and
young people discover and use their technical and scientific talent. ZDI relies on 27 centres with
academic and extracurricular offerings in technical and natural sciences, the ZDI-school labs in
which students can research and experiment in a professional environment, the ZDI-engineer
days when universities and businesses open their doors to students. (North-Rhine Westphalia)
Chemistry Box99: teachers training to run chemical experiments + chemical kit (Chemical
Industry Association of Hesse)
Research Lab for Kids100: everyday’s life chemistry in primary schools (Chemical Industry
Association of Hesse)
Science Camps101 for kids 6-10 and families (Chemical Industry Association of Hesse)
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Chemicals Northwest102, the industry-led chemical cluster support organisation in Northwest
England, coordinates two programmes that ensure schools can deliver relevant and exciting
science teaching, and give children and students an opportunity to visit chemicals companies
and see science in action: Primary School Programme – Children Challenging Industry103, that
gives to pupils aged 8-11 an opportunity to work with a science advisory teacher in the
classroom on practical science investigations set within an industrial context, and Secondary
School Programme – Collaboration of Schools and Industry104, that comprises two initiatives -
Science for Life and Positive Perceptions of Industry - which aim to improve the image of the
industry and assist young people’s education and personal development. Both schemes link
secondary schools with local industry.
IUPAC (International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry) and UNESCO (United Nations
Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) declared 2011 the International Year of
Chemistry, to increase public appreciation of chemistry, encourage interest in chemistry among
young people, generate enthusiasm for the creative future of chemistry and underline the critical
role it plays in a sustainable future105.
Europe’s Chemistry Societies support many national activities to promote the study of
chemistry and to attract more students into the subject. Many societies work closely with
national teaching associations to provide support for continuing professional development and
the production of high quality educational materials.
Xpermania106: is a joint project of the Association of Petrochemicals Producers in Europe107
(Appe) and European Schoolnet108. It concentrates on chemistry and physics, to boost young
people’s interest in science. It helps students in lower and secondary school classes and their
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teachers to understand the wide variety of applications of petrochemistry and how this relatively
new and fascinating science has contributed to the evolution of many day-to-day items. Started
in 2007 it has already involved students from 7.000 schools.
15 Chemistry or/and chemical engineering faculties European Union
should define the profiles of new professions in Leonardo da Vinci109: the programme helps to fund thousands of vocational education and
cooperation with industry. training courses across Europe. Since 1995, the EU has helped more than 600,000 young people
to go on training placements abroad. It has also funded 110,000 exchanges for trainers and more
than 3,000 projects aimed at modernising the sector. Around 50% of all students in upper
secondary education receive vocational education and training.
New Skills for New Jobs110 an initiative launched in December 2008, when the Commission set
out its priorities, in particular about how to best forecast the needs of tomorrow's labour market
and how these needs then can be matched with the skills that people acquire.
Skill needs in sectors: the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training
(Cedefop) looks into selected sectors of the economy to identify new and emerging skill
Cedefop Skillsnet network112 welcomes researchers and experts active in early identification of
skill needs and forecasting or in the transfer of research results on future skill requirements into
policy and practice. Skillsnet members are involved in Cedefop activities related to
identification of skill needs (forecasting, employer surveys, sectoral analysis) and receive
privileged access to information.
"Comprehensive Sectoral Analysis Of Emerging Competences And Economic Activities In The
European Union - Chemicals, Pharmaceuticals, Rubber & Plastic Products in the EU " by
TNO/ZSI/SEOR, 2009113. The Commission has conducted 18 Sectoral Level Analyses that seek
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to identify emerging competences and future skills needs. By applying a common foresight
scenario-based approach, these studies provide options both for anticipating and adapting to
change. The studies cover 18 sectors, including chemicals, pharmaceuticals, rubber and plastic
products. The study concludes that the sector’s workforce structurally older than in other sectors
poses a potential skills gap. The trend from lower skilled to medium- and high-skilled
employment can be observed in the chemicals industry and it is especially pronounced in the
technical occupations. This general trend of up-skilling across job functions is bound to
continue in the coming years. Across all job functions soft skills will become increasingly
important, especially for high skilled professional jobs. Due to the changing nature of jobs,
predefined technical knowledge capabilities will become less important. Skills to adapt and
learn new competences and life-long learning will be put at a premium.
Council Conclusions on "New Skills for New Jobs: the way forward”, June 2010114: The
conclusions call on the Commission to propose further steps to develop the "New Skills for
New Jobs" initiative and to consider strengthening the role of the EU funding mechanisms in
the development of measures to anticipate skills demand and supply. The Council also calls the
Commission to improve the analysis of labour market trends and labour market forecasting,
develop tools and services that will improve the quality of guidance, promote labour mobility
and help to tackle mismatches between supply and demand as regards skills. Examples include
the development of a European taxonomy on Skills, Competences and Occupations (ESCO),
and the EURES “Match and Map” service.
Agenda for new skills and jobs115 is the Commission's contribution to reaching the EU
employment rate target for women and men of 75 % for the 20-64 years age group by 2020 and
part of the Europe 2020 Strategy. It also highlights the EU's targets to reduce the early school
leaving rate to under 10% and increase the number of young people in higher education or
equivalent vocational education to at least 40%. To make Europe's labour markets function
better the Commission proposes thirteen concrete actions that will help: 1) to step up labour
Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions "An Agenda for
new skills and jobs: A European contribution towards full employment", COM/2010/0682 final (http://eur-
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market reform to improve flexibility and security of labour markets ('flexicurity'); 2) to give
people and businesses the right incentives to invest in training to continuously upgrade people's
skills in line with labour market needs; 3) to ensure decent working conditions while improving
the quality of employment legislation; 4) to ensure the right labour market conditions are in
place for job creation such as less administrative burdens or lowering the taxes on labour and
mobility. The Agenda for New Skills and Jobs complements the Commission's 'Youth on the
Move' initiative, which aims to help young people to gain the knowledge, skills and experience
they need to make their first job a reality.
University-business dialogue and co-operation116 and EU Forum for University Business
Dialogue - COM(2009)158117 The European University-Business Forum took place on
February 2008, February 2009 and May 2010118. The Commission is considering the
development of sectoral approaches, one possibility being chemistry.
Higher Education in Europe119. It plays an essential role in society, creating new knowledge,
transferring it to students and fostering innovation. The EC has published, as part of the Lisbon
Strategy for Growth and Jobs, a modernisation agenda for universities which was welcomed by
the Member States and the main stakeholders in higher education. The main fields of reform
are: Curricular (the three cycle system bachelor-master-doctorate, competence based learning,
flexible learning paths, recognition, mobility); Governance (University autonomy, strategic
partnerships, including with enterprises, quality assurance); Funding (Diversified sources of
university income better linked to performance, promoting equity, access and efficiency,
including the possible role of tuition fees, grants and loans). The European Commission helps
EU member states and neighbouring countries in their modernising efforts through policy
initiatives, discussion papers and events, as well as through EU programmes promoting mobility
in education such as Erasmus, Tempus and Erasmus Mundus.
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UK: Higher Education Innovation Fund supports capacity for knowledge exchange;
Engineering and Physical Research Council operates in close cooperation with industry;
Cogent, Sector Skill Council for the chemical industry.
Sector skills councils established in: BE, CZ, ES, FI, FR, UK
Science Bazaar (Bavaria). The “science bazaar” has been developed by the Bavarian association
of chemical industry VCI as a platform to identify joint needs and activities in chemical
research and development of companies and academia. Though cooperation between chemical
industry and research in Bavaria is well established, both VCI and Chemie-Cluster Bayern have
agreed that a second “science bazaar” would be helpful to see whether there is still a fit between
industrial research needs and academic standards in education. Originally planned for 2010, this
platform is yet to be discussed and organized in detail.
Industry and Academia
Doctoral Course in Refining, Petrochemical and Chemical Engineering, launched in 2009 by
Industry/Universities (AIPQR – Association of Petrochemical, Chemical and Refining Industries,
European Chemistry Thematic Network Association: Erasmus academic network in the area of
chemistry/chemical engineering published, in cooperation with industry (Cefic), a report on the
employability of chemistry graduates120.
European Chemistry and Chemical Engineering Education project (EC2E2N), supported in
2009 through the EU’s Life Long Learning programme, brings together all actors in higher
education chemistry and chemical engineering fields in Europe (schools, universities, industries,
national chemical societies, accreditation bodies). The project, supported by EuCheMS and
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Cefic, brings all actors together to collaborate in the development of a knowledge based
economy in chemistry and chemical engineering. It increases the attractiveness of studies in
chemistry and chemical engineering and helps those involved to develop entrepreneurial
16 Industry, in cooperation with education and European Union
employment agencies, should intensify efforts to " Comprehensive Sectoral Analysis Of Emerging Competences And Economic Activities In The
assess its human resource requirements in the European Union - Chemicals, Pharmaceuticals, Rubber & Plastic Products in the EU "
short and long term in various locations and TNO/ZSI/SEOR (financed by EC) May 2009122. Refer to recommendation 15 for further
regions and identify probable changes in skill information.
Commission Communication "A new partnership for the modernisation of universities: the EU
Forum for University Business Dialogue", COM(2009)158 final, 2 April 2009123: The
University-Business Forum, launched on the basis of the Commission communication of 10
May 2006 on modernising universities, provides a European platform for dialogue. This
communication follows from the forum’s call to improve the links between businesses and
universities, with a view to strengthening Europe as a knowledge-based society and aims at:
taking stock of challenges and barriers to university-business cooperation, as well as of good
practices; proposing future work for the forum; establishing follow-up actions to foster
“New Skills for New Jobs: Action Now - A report by the Expert Group on New Skills for New
Jobs” prepared for the European Commission - February 2010124: the report stresses the need
to provide the right incentives for people to upgrade their skills, to better link education, training
and work, to develop the right mix of skills, and to better anticipate those skills needed in the
future. It calls for action in four main areas: Provide better incentives for employers and
individuals to up-skill, and investment in skills must be significant, smart and not just financial;
Open up the worlds of education and training by making education and training institutions
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more innovative and responsive to both learners' and employers' needs, and by developing
relevant qualifications that focus on concrete learning outcomes; Offer a better mix of skills that
is more suited to labour market needs; Better anticipation of future skill needs. The report is a
key follow-up to the European Commission's 2008 'New Skills for New Jobs' initiative and was
presented in February 2010.
Inncorpora, co-financing the cost for companies of hiring graduates and technicians as
researchers or innovation managers in R&D projects (ES)125
Centres of Industrial Collaboration (CIC’s) based at regional universities (Yorkshire &
Humber) as part of the national UK initiative Centres of Industrial Collaboration covering
different technological areas, e.g. polymers126. The CICs created in the Yorkshire & Humber
region over the last 5 years, hosted in regional universities to provided opportunities to support
business utilizing university expertise in near market development. In Yorkshire & Humber the
CICs cover Green Chemistry (York), Particulate Science (Bradford) and Environmental
Technologies127 (Hull). A REACH training course was set up in 2007 to support expertise
development to support the introduction of REACH to local industry and SMEs.
CATCH128 - Centre training environment (Yorkshire & Humber): In 2006 HCF Ltd with its
local regional network and collaboration partners collected over €10 million to build a new and
innovative facility (CATCH) which replicates the scale and operating protocols of a real
chemical manufacturing site. The idea is to train young apprentices (16+) is as real an industrial
environment as possible. CATCH has been a major local success in the Humber and over 400
young apprentices have trained on the site. Currently the site is due to expand with a further €8
million expansion to double the training capacity of the site.
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CEFIC: Survey on future skills for scientists and engineers129. The survey asked for the first
time company Board members to identify their skills needs to implement innovation in the
coming years. This “wish list” is currently discussed with the education community and
academia to integrate it into higher education curricula and training of existing work force.
Based on this survey, issues such as integration of business and related skills in scientific
curricula, or multidisciplinary skill base have been addressed in order to ensure innovation can
successfully transfer research into real products and processes. The survey highlighted that
multidisciplinary broad skills integrating understanding of different scientific and technical
disciplines, as well as business and personal skills, will be required to ensure scientists and
engineers can successfully transform research results into innovation for the benefit of society.
Chemicals Employment Portal, created to receive and manage both job vacancies and demands
related to the chemical sector by FEIQUE, the Permanent Chemistry and Society Forum, and
the Ministry of Education, Social Policies and Sports of Spain130
4. ENERGY AND FEEDSTOCK
17 In order to support the competitiveness of the
petrochemicals sector in Europe, measures, such
as strengthening clusters and improving
infrastructure, should be taken to consolidate
existing competitive advantages and secure the
integration of Europe’s chemicals industry as a
18 Improved performance of an effectively European Union
liberalised gas market, at least in the Community, New Regulation on security of gas supply131 focuses on transparency and solidarity, introduces
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and securing reliable imports of gas at obligatory preventive action and emergency plans at national (and/or regional) level, defines
competitive non-distorted prices are of very high common standards for security of supply and sets compulsory technical features – such as
importance for substantial parts of the chemicals reverse flows – that aim at efficiently mitigating any future shortages at regional level. The
industry. Regulation repeals Directive 2004/67/EC.
TEN-E: the Commission supports politically and financially, the development of projects of
European added value: Out of 32 electricity projects of European interest, 5 have been
completely finalised, 3 partly. Of those under construction, 4 have been completed, 5 partly
completed. Among the 10 gas projects of European interest, 2 have been completely finalised, 2
partly. Of those under construction, 1 has been completed, 2 partly completed
Second Strategic Energy Review132 (November 2008) is a forward-looking political agenda to
achieve Europe’s core energy objectives of sustainability, competitiveness and security of
supply. This agenda means substantial change in Europe's energy system over the next years,
with public authorities, energy regulators, infrastructure operators, the energy industry and
citizens all actively involved. The European Commission has proposed a wide-ranging energy
package that includes: putting forward a new strategy to build up energy solidarity among
Member States and a new policy on energy networks to stimulate investment in more efficient,
low-carbon energy networks; proposing a Energy Security and Solidarity Action Plan to secure
sustainable energy supplies in the EU and looking at the challenges that Europe will face
between 2020 and 2050; adopting a package of energy efficiency proposals aims to make energy
savings in key areas, such as reinforcing energy efficiency legislation on buildings and energy-
European Energy Programme for Recovery133, launched by Regulation 663/2009, is intended to
help to speed up and secure investments on infrastructure and technology projects in the energy
sector, help to improve the security of supply of the Member States and help to speed up the
implementation of the 20/20/20 objectives for 2020. A Report from the Commission to the
Regulation 994/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 October 2010 concerning measures to safeguard security of gas supply and repealing Council Directive
2004/67/EC, OJ L 295/1, 12.11.2010, http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2010:295:0001:0022:EN:PDF
EN 37 EN
Council and the European Parliament on the implementation of the European Energy
Programme for Recovery has been published in April 2010134 The Report underlines how the
EEPR supports mature projects that, once they are operational, will supply the European Union
with about 50 Bcm/y of additional gas from outside Europe entering through the pipelines
Nabucco, ITGI-Poseidon, GALSI, and the new liquid natural gas terminals in Poland and
Cyprus and help strengthen the European gas pipeline network by developing new
interconnections, or reinforcing existing ones, between Portugal / Spain / France (bi-directional),
Germany /Belgium / UK (bi-directional), Romania / Bulgaria / Greece / Italy, Slovakia /
Hungary (bidirectional)and the Baltic countries / Poland / Denmark / Germany.
Internal Energy Market Package135: This package consist of five new legal acts: Directive
2009/72/EC concerning common rules for the internal market in electricity and repealing
Directive 2003/54/EC; Directive 2009/73/EC concerning common rules for the internal market
in natural gas and repealing Directive 2003/55/EC; Regulation (EC) No 713/2009 establishing
an Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators; Regulation (EC) No 714/2009 on
conditions for access to the network for cross-border exchanges in electricity and repealing
Regulation (EC) No 1228/2003; Regulation (EC) No 715/2009 on conditions for access to the
natural gas transmission networks and repealing Regulation (EC) No 1775/2005
Energy Infrastructure Package136 has the following general objectives: completing the Internal
Energy Market; ensuring the development of networks to permit the achievement of the EU's
energy and climate objectives; guaranteeing EU security of energy supply, through assistance
for key infrastructure projects within and outside the EU.
Energy 2020 - A strategy for competitive, sustainable and secure energy137: The Communication
defines the energy priorities for the next ten years and sets out the actions to be taken in order to
tackle the challenges of saving energy, achieving a market with competitive prizes and secure
"Report from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament on the implementation of the European Energy Programme for Recovery" COM(2010)0191,
27/04/2010 at http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=CELEX:52010DC0191:EN:HTML:NOT
Communicatio from the Commissione to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions "Energy 2020 -
A strategy for competitive, sustainable and secure energy" COM(2010)639 - http://www.energy.eu/directives/com-2010-0639.pdf
EN 38 EN
supplies, boosting technological leadership, and effectively negotiate with our international
partners. On the basis of these priorities and the action presented, the Commission has
announced in its Work Programme the intention to present concrete proposals within the next 18
months. This communication also sets the agenda for the discussion by Heads of States and
Governments at the first EU Summit on Energy on 4 February 2011.
On 17 November 2010, the European Commission has adopted the Communication "Energy
infrastructure priorities for 2020 and beyond - A Blueprint for an integrated European energy
network"138. In the Communication, the Commission defines EU priority corridors for the
transport of electricity, gas and oil. A toolbox is also proposed in order to enable a timely
implementation of these priority infrastructures.
19 Due to the long term nature of the high European Union
investments required and the need to achieve Second Strategic Energy Review (November 2008)
high capacity utilisation, stable long term
electricity supply is a key element of European Energy Programme for Recovery
competitiveness for important parts of the
chemicals industry. Long term contracts with Internal Energy Market Package
power generators or increased own generation
in e.g. combined heat and power facilities to Energy Infrastructure Package
cover inherent heat demand are the main
20 At present, it seems too early to make a robust European Union
assessment of the economic viability of “Taking bio-based from promise to market - Measures to promote the market introduction of
renewable feedstock in the chemicals industry as innovative bio-based products - A report from the Ad-hoc Advisory Group for Bio-based Products
a replacement for fossil feedstock, but the in the framework of the European Commission’s Lead Market Initiative”, 3 November 2009139. In
expected significant potential available in the 2008, the Commission set up an expert group composed of representatives from national
longer term provides sufficient justification to governments, industry and academia, entitled the Ad-hoc Advisory Group for Bio-based Products.
continue research and industrial development It has analysed the current market conditions and how the legislative framework affects the
EN 39 EN
activities as a priority. introduction of products made from renewable raw material. In November 2009 it delivered a
report identifying 44 recommendations to promote bio-based products.
Green Public Procurement140 (GPP) is defined as the "process whereby public authorities seek
to procure goods, services and works with a reduced environmental impact throughout their life
cycle141”. GPP is a voluntary instrument, which means that individual Member States and public
authorities can determine the extent to which they implement it. To support the introduction and
use of GPP the European Commission published a handbook on environmental public
procurement142. The use of renewable raw materials is specially addressed as part of the core
and award GPP criteria for e.g. food and catering services143.
Standardisation: Mandate 52/2008 for the programming of standards for all types of bio-based
products and 53/2008 for the elaboration of pre-standards for bio-lubricants and bio-polymers.
The following first standardisation document is available: CEN/TR 15932 "Plastics -
Recommendation for terminology and characterisation of biopolymers and bioplastics" already
issued. Two more are in the issuing process: Plastics - Determination of the bio-based carbon
content and Plastics - Declaration of the bio-based carbon content. The definition of standards
will help the development of markets for bio-based products.
European ECO-Label: Commission Decision 2005/360/EC on establishing ecological criteria
and the related assessment and verification requirements for the award of the Community eco-
label to lubricants144. The definition of these criteria will contribute to strengthen the market
position of bio-based lubricants.
EuroBioRef project145 (European Multilevel Integrated Biorefinery Design for Sustainable
Biomass Processing) coordinated by CNRS, France, has been launched in March 2010 and will
last 4 years. It is supported by a 23 million euros funding from the EU’s 7th Framework
Communication COM(2008)400 “Public procurement for a better environment”, http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=COM:2008:0400:FIN:EN:PDF
“Buying Green! – A Handbook on environmental public procurement”, http://ec.europa.eu/environment/gpp/pdf/buying_green_handbook_en.pdf
EN 40 EN
Program. EuroBioRef will deal with the entire process of transformation of biomass, from fields
to final commercial products. It will involve 28 partners from 14 different countries into a highly
collaborative work. BIOREF-INTEG146 is a “Coordination and Support Action Project” within
the framework of the 7th Framework Program (Theme Energy). The project is funded by the
European Commission from June 2008 until May 2010 and is co-ordinated by the Energy
Research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN). It is supported by a further 12 partners from all over
Europe who vary from SME’S and industrial partners, to Universities and RTD institutes.
BE-NL: Bio Base Europe: launched in 2009 by Biopark Terneuzen in the Netherlands and
Ghent Bio-energy Valley in Belgium has an overall budget of 21 million Euros and is
financially supported by the European Union, Belgium and the Netherlands within the
framework of an Interreg program. It will set up a Bio Base Europe Pilot Plant (operational mid-
2010) in Ghent and will scale up and optimise biobased processes to prepare them for industrial
applications. It will serve as an open innovation centre for commercial companies and research
institutes looking to develop new biobased activities. It will also create a Bio Base Europe
Training Centre in Terneuzen, which will help to address the industry-wide shortage of skilled
process operators and technical maintenance specialists for biobased industries. The new
training facility will be fully operational in 2011.
DE: the Chemical-Biotechnology Process Development Center (CBP) Leuna is a 50 million
euros project launched in 2010 and supported by the German federal Ministry for Education and
Research, Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection, Federal Ministry of
Environment and the state government of Saxony-Anhalt. It will set up the world’s first
lignocellulose biorefinery for the production of chemicals, fuels, electricity and heat, at the
Leuna chemical location in Saxony-Anhalt. It is planned to complete the construction of the
refinery by 2012. Researchers at CBP will focus on scale up from the laboratory the processes
that transform biomass from many different sources into chemical materials.
DK: Inbicon Biomass Refinery at Kalundborg. The total cost of the investment (54 million
euros) has been supported by European funds (9 million euros for demonstration under the 7th
EN 41 EN
Framework Programme) and by the Danish Energy Technology Development and
Demonstration Programme (EUDP, 10 million euros). The plant currently produces 1.4 million
gallons of cellulosic ethanol, 14,333 tons of lignin pellets and 12,128 tons of C5 molasses.
FI: BioRefine 2007-12: this programme is managed by Tekes, the Finnish Funding Agency for
Technology and Innovation, opens up international opportunities for top-level Finnish expertise,
based especially on the forest and energy industries. Multilateral and bilateral collaboration are
key factors in developing innovative biomass-based products, technologies, and services. It has
a budget of 137m€ on biomass processing and biorefinery
NL: BE-Basic Bioprocess Pilot Facility147. The European Regional Development Fund, the
Ministries of Agriculture, Nature & Food Quality and Economic Affairs, the Province of South
Holland and the Municipalities of Rotterdam, Delft and The Hague, knowledge institutions and
industry have planned a mutual investment of more than 100 million euros in a pilot facility in
Delft. This will enable companies and knowledge institutions to scale up from laboratory to
industrial scale, a step that represents a bottleneck when it comes to converting bio-based
residues such as agricultural waste into raw materials for building materials, chemical and
pharmaceutical products and biofuels.
Study on current/future capability in industrial biotechnologies, linked to BioChem project
managed by Chemistry Innovation (Scotland).
21 Incentives (e.g. subsidies or regulation) in European Union
agriculture or energy policy can seriously In the Renewable Energy Directive of 2009148 the impact of incentives on specific uses of
jeopardise attractive established uses of bio-based renewable raw materials on other applications has been taken into account. Article 23 lays down
raw materials in the chemicals industry by that “[..] the Commission shall report every two years to the European Parliament and the
favouring other applications (e.g. threat to tallow Council. The first report shall be submitted in 2012. [..] In its reports, the Commission shall, in
availability as feedstock for the detergent industry
Directive 2009/28/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 April 2009 on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources and amending and
subsequently repealing Directives 2001/77/EC and 2003/30/EC (http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=CELEX:32009L0028:EN:NOT)
EN 42 EN
due to higher subsidies for bio-fuel use). Policy particular, analyse: [..] the impact of increased demand for biomass on biomass using sectors”.
makers at European, national and local level,
should seek to avoid such unwanted side effects.
5. CLIMATE CHANGE POLICY
22 Action on climate change provides significant European Union
business opportunities for the European Europe 2020 Strategy149: one of the seven Flagship Initiatives is devoted to establish a
chemicals industry. At the same time, it will “Resource efficient Europe” to help decouple economic growth from the use of resources,
remain an important research and development support the shift towards a low carbon economy, increase the use of renewable energy sources,
focus in chemistry. This potential should be fully modernise our transport sector and promote energy efficiency. The chemical industry can play a
exploited. major role in its implementation.
Key Enabling Technologies (KETs)150: the Commission identified the KETs that strengthen the
EU’s industrial and innovation capacity to address the societal challenges ahead and proposed a
set of measures to improve the related framework conditions as part of the development of EU
industrial and innovation policy. The Communication set up a high-level expert group tasked
with developing a shared longer term strategy and action plan on the identified KETs. This
group started its work on July 2010 and has a mandate for one year. The Communication is
complemented by the Staff Working Document151 that explains why advanced materials,
nanotechnology, micro- and nano-electronics, biotechnology and photonics have been identified
as Key Enabling Technologies for improving European industrial competitiveness.
“Europe 2020 – A European strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth”
Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions "Preparing for
our future: Developing a common strategy for key enabling technologies in the EU" COM(2009) 512 final
"Current situation of key enabling technologies in Europe" SEC(2009)1257,
EN 43 EN
CARE+: a European project – co-financed by the programme Intelligent Energy for Europe - to
help small and medium sized enterprises in the chemical industry to realize energy savings and
improve energy efficiency. First target countries are Bulgaria, Italy and Poland. Main
instruments developed are an Energy Management Best Practice Manual and a Self Audit
23 As the chemicals industry is truly globalised, European Union
adequate measurable action by emerging Communication from the Commission “International climate policy post-Copenhagen: Acting
economies is needed to mitigate climate change. now to reinvigorate global action on climate change” COM(2010) 86 final153.
This would contribute to creating a more level
playing field, allowing the European chemicals The Commission published a post-Copenhagen communication in March 2010 setting out a
industry to compete. Europe should do its utmost strategy to help maintain the momentum of global efforts to tackle climate change. In May 2010,
to create the conditions for such action. the Commission published a communication revising the assessment of the costs of the 20%
target, giving an estimation of the costs of moving to 30% and analysing the options to do so154.
The Environment Council, on October 14, 2010, adopted conclusions on the EU position for the
Cancún climate conference. The EU expects the meeting to adopt a balanced set of decisions
that contribute to establishing an international regime to protect the climate after 2012. The
Council reiterated its preference that this should take the form of a single legally binding
instrument. At the same time, it confirmed its willingness to consider a second commitment
period under the Kyoto Protocol if this were part of a wider outcome including the perspective
of a global framework engaging all major economies.
24 In view of the complexity of sectoral agreements European Union
in the chemicals industry, support by all actors Global sectoral study: final report155 published in 2010 to provide a "proof -of-concept" of the
(industry, governments, including those of feasibility of sectoral approaches in a post -2012 international framework for climate policy. The
"Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: Analysis of
options to move beyond 20% greenhouse gas emission reductions and assessing the risk of carbon leakage", 26.5.2010, COM(2010) 265 final;
EN 44 EN
emerging countries, and the Commission) to study initially investigated a transnational approach in which all countries face similar
bring these initiatives to a successful conclusion in benchmarks, a sectoral CDM approach emphasizing carbon credits, and a bottom-up approach
as many subsectors of the chemicals industry as envisaging financial and technology assistance from advanced economies to support ambitious
possible is to be welcomed. no–lose crediting baselines in developing countries. In “Sectoral Approaches,” developing
countries undertake efforts to reduce Green House Gases emissions intensity or growth in key
economic sectors with assistance from advanced economy countries. Sector programs offer a
promising avenue for scaling up emission reductions in developing countries and the transfer of
financial and technology assistance from advanced economy countries.
In the course of 2009, the chemical industry started an attempt to develop a cross-sectoral
approach at international level via the International Council of Chemical Associations (ICCA),
which was eventually not successful in the absence of an international political agreement at the
25 Robust and verifiable information on the European Union
emissions and the emission reduction potential of Commission Decision of 24 December 2009 determining, pursuant to Directive 2003/87/EC of
the chemicals industry is crucial for decisions on the European Parliament and of the Council, a list of sectors and subsectors which are deemed to
measures to mitigate climate change and for be exposed to a significant risk of carbon leakage 156.
setting benchmarks for the future
implementation of the European emissions In line with the provisions of the ETS Directive, large parts of the chemicals industry are
trading system. Closure of the current deemed to be exposed to a significant risk of carbon leakage.
information gap is of the utmost priority.
On the basis of a thorough evaluation of emission and production data, the Commission has
presented a draft Decision determining transitional Union-wide rules for the harmonised free
allocation of emission allowances pursuant to Article 10a of Directive 2003/87/EC, including
benchmarks for 15 chemical products in a manner that sets an incentive for further reduction of
GHG emissions while providing for the necessary free allocation of emission allowances to
avoid carbon leakage. Extensive work to define benchmarks has been carried out by the
Commission, in cooperation with industry and member states. The Draft Commission Decision
EN 45 EN
on free allocation rules in ETS as of 2013 has been approved by the Member States in the
Climate Change Committee and submitted to the European Parliament and the Council for a
three month scrutiny period before its final adoption expected for April 2011157.
Cefic coordinated a global study on carbon life cycle assessment and is currently participated in
a technology roadmap project highlighting the significant contribution of the chemicals industry
to global energy and climate challenges, in cooperation with IEA and ICCA (to be published in
The chemical industry worked closely with the Commission in the crucial phase of the definition
of Union-wide implementing measures to be set under the revised ETS directive. Extensive data
collection on GHG emissions and efficiency performance has been made through European
industrial organisations. Independent verification of submitted data has been carried out.
26 Member States and the Commission should make European Union
strong efforts for the full implementation of the Community Union-Wide wide Implementing Measures, in particular the adoption of the list of
revised ETS Directive within the ambitious sectors deemed to be at a significant risk of carbon leakage, and to approval of the establish free
timelines set and in cooperation with all allocation rules and product benchmarks for the chemicals industry159.
The chemicals industry may also benefit from a major new funding programme for low carbon
technologies, the so-called NER 300 programme160 that was launched in November 2010. It aims
to co-fund at least 8 carbon capture and storage (CCS) demonstration projects, including on
industrial applications, and at least 34 innovative renewable energy technology demonstration
projects at commercial scale in the territories of the EU Member States.
Same as in note 73
Commission Decision 2010/670/EU http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2010:290:0039:0048:EN:PDF
EN 46 EN
UK: Carbon Reduction Commitment Energy Efficiency Scheme 161, Climate Change
CO2Sense Ltd created by the regional development agency to support the development of carbon
capture technology and deployment across the energy & processes sectors (Yorkshire & Humber).
27 In many cases the development of local cluster Regions
platforms with active cooperation between Region cluster organisations for chemicals are developing new Supply Chain Networks to
industry and (local) public authorities would support SME logistics and competitive opportunities (Yorkshire & Humber).
improve their logistical efficiency and overall
management. A multi-stakeholder approach to ChemLog is a European cooperation project between regional authorities, chemical industry
cluster leadership may enable the development of associations and scientific institutions from Germany, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia,
long term perspectives and guarantee consistency. Hungary and Italy with the objective to strengthen competitiveness of the chemical industry by
improving framework conditions for supply chain management in Central and Eastern Europe. It
aims at overcoming barriers for transnational transport in the West-East and East-West
dimension by initiating a broad process of exchange of experience and facilitating the
development of transnational infrastructure projects with high relevance for the chemical
Logistics in Wallonia163 (Wallonia, Belgium) is the Transport and Logistics Centre of
Competence, created to promote the transport and logistics sector of Wallonia both within the
country and abroad, by coordinating activities, by defining a common strategy and by
EN 47 EN
optimising human and technological resources.
Flemish Institute for Logistics164 – VIL (Flanders) is a competence centre, ie, a Flemish research
institute which helps businesses to implement innovative logistics projects. VIL is an Incubator
of innovative state-of-the art logistics concepts and technologies, matches knowledge from
research institutes with the business community and develops promotional activities.
28 Stakeholders should work together with European Union
authorities on a Member State and Community Communication from the Commission “Freight Transport Logistics Action Plan”
level to further identify and address key COM/2007/0607165 is one of a series of policy initiatives jointly launched by the European
bottlenecks which prevent wider use of Commission to improve the efficiency and sustainability of freight transport in Europe It
intermodal transport. presents a number of short- to medium-term actions that will help Europe address its current and
future challenges and ensure a competitive and sustainable freight transport system in Europe.
The external dimension of all of these actions will need to be considered with a view to
efficiently integrating third countries and in particular neighbouring countries into the logistic
"Action Plan for the Deployment of Intelligent Transport Systems in Europe"
COM(2008)886166: the Action Plan suggested a number of targeted measures and included the
proposal for Directive 2010/40/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 7 July
2010 on the framework for the deployment of Intelligent Transport Systems in the field of road
transport and for interfaces with other modes of transport. The goal is to create the momentum
necessary to speed up market penetration of rather mature ITS applications and services in
Europe. The initiative is supported by five co-operating Directorates-General: DG Mobility and
Transport (lead), DG Information Society and Media, DG Research, DG Enterprise and Industry
EN 48 EN
and DG Climate Action.
“A sustainable future for transport - Towards an integrated, technology-led and user-friendly
system” COM(2009) 279167 The Communication is at the same time a strategy document
summarises the results of a wide reflection and a consultation document, aiming at identifying
policy options to be tested and eventually included in the next Transport White Paper in 2011.
NL: The Dutch government has studied all modes of transport (rail, waterways, roads and
pipelines) for transporting chemicals, oil and gas. This study has indicated that the transport
arrangements for the future must take account the needs of a healthy chemical industry in the
Netherlands. In formulating further policies on land use and transportation, this will be taken
LosamedChem168: 10 partners from all Mediterranean basin (Novara). The project originates
from the development of transport of chemicals in the Mediterranean and aims to reach the
following main objectives: promote cooperation among chemical districts and between them and
the main harbours; improve integration between harbours/hinterlands; sustain intermodality;
reinforce the railways/waterways transportation for chemical products; promote a transfer of
know-how and safety technologies; harmonize regulations and policies.
29 National and European authorities should European Union
carefully assess possibilities for revitalising Communication from the Commission “Freight Transport Logistics Action Plan”
railway freight transport. COM/2007/0607169 is one of a series of policy initiatives jointly launched by the European
Commission to improve the efficiency and sustainability of freight transport in Europe It
presents a number of short- to medium-term actions that will help Europe address its current and
future challenges and ensure a competitive and sustainable freight transport system in Europe.
EN 49 EN
The external dimension of all of these actions will need to be considered with a view to
efficiently integrating third countries and in particular neighbouring countries into the logistic
Regulation 913/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22:09/2010 concerning a
European rail network for competitive freight COM/2008/0852 final170. The proposal is based
on the creation of nine international corridors with three principal objectives in view of a more
competitive rail freight with a better quality of services: to strengthen cooperation between rail
infrastructure managers; to guarantee to freight trains appropriate treatment in terms of
allocation on lines that cater also to passengers trains; to allow the development of
multimodality, in particular in ports.
ES: interministerial commission and a workgroup, managed by Ministry of Public Works and
Ministry of Industry, Tourism and Trade to promote the development of railroad freights and
intermodality according to the needs of the chemicals industry171.
30 Massive congestion of the road network is a European Union
major problem for chemical logistics and the Regulation (EC) No 1072/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 21 October
Commission’s work in investigating solutions to 2009 on common rules for access to the international road haulage market (Articles 8 and 9
the problem is strongly supported. only)172: intends to simplify and harmonise further the current rules by consolidating and
merging previous legislation on access to the road transport market. The main objective is to
eliminate legal uncertainty for Community hauliers and adapt legislation to market needs.
Study on the Single Wagonload Traffic (2010/11): single wagon load is a flexible system which
allows companies to choose how many wagons they want to dispatch instead of running a block
EN 50 EN
train, which greatly increases flexibility.
Eurovignette173: Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council
amending Directive 1999/62/EC on the charging of heavy goods vehicles for the use of certain
infrastructures, COM(2008)436 seeks to amend Directive 1999/62/EC to establish a framework
which enables Member States to calculate and vary tolls on the basis of the costs of traffic based
pollution and of congestion in a way compatible with the internal market. Such charges will
encourage transport operators to use cleaner vehicles, to choose less congested routes, to
optimise the loading of their vehicles, and ultimately to make more efficient use of
Communication from the Commission "Action Plan for the Deployment of Intelligent Transport
Systems in Europe" COM(2008)886174: the Action Plan suggested a number of targeted
measures and included the proposal for Directive 2010/40/EU (see next point). The goal is to
create the momentum necessary to speed up market penetration of rather mature ITS
applications and services in Europe. The initiative is supported by five co-operating
Directorates-General: DG Mobility and Transport (lead), DG Information Society and Media,
DG Research, DG Enterprise and Industry and DG Climate Action.
Directive 2010/40/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 7 July 2010 on the
framework for the deployment of Intelligent Transport Systems in the field of road transport and
for interfaces with other modes of transport 175 The Directive establishes a framework in support
of the coordinated and coherent deployment and use of Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS)
within the Union, in particular across the borders between the Member States, and sets out the
general conditions necessary for that purpose. It provides for the development of specifications
for actions within the priority areas, as well as for the development, where appropriate, of
EN 51 EN
31 The question of closing gaps in the olefin pipeline European Union
network and public support for such an initiative European Energy Programme for Recovery176: refer to recommendation 18 for further
needs to be pursued in order to establish an information.
appropriate basis for decisions on investments
and political priorities in this field. The High Regions
Level Group welcomes the Commission’s 2nd
Strategic Energy Review which is expected to Propylen and CO pipelines (under construction in North Rhine Westphalia), ethylene pipeline to
provide clarification on the way ahead. connect the northern Germany chemical parks (Schleswig-Holstein)
7. GLOBALISATION, INTERNATIONAL COMPETITIVENESS AND TRADE
32 Notwithstanding the difficulties in reaching an European Union
agreement in the framework of the WTO trade The EU continued its efforts to obtain a deal in the WTO Doha Development Agenda
negotiations, the multilateral approach towards negotiations despite the reluctance of some major trading partners. Discussions on the sectoral
trade liberalisation, currently being pursued proposal on chemical tariffs and negotiations on Trade Facilitation are ongoing but show only
through the DDA negotiations, remains the limited advancement. Adherence to a sectoral tariff liberalization agreement of all major actors
preferred option. In order to foster increased of the world chemicals market remains the goal pursued by the EU in the NAMA negotiations.
competitiveness for the European chemicals
industry, the EU should therefore continue to As a follow-up to the HLG work the Commission carried out under the Swedish Presidency of the
actively pursue an overall NAMA-agreement Trade Policy Committee carried out a sectoral task within the Trade Policy Committee on
complemented by an ambitious sectoral identifying and discussing main tariff and non-tariff issues faced in trade affairs by the chemicals
agreement on chemicals. All countries with a industry, with the help of Member State trade experts. As an outcome, the Committee presented a
substantial chemicals industry should participate sectoral fiche taking stock of the discussion, including with regard to key liberalization target
in this, particularly the emerging economies. The markets, and relevant non-tariff barriers. The fiche has also outlined specific points for policy
EU should continue its efforts to conclude an action,
agreement on trade facilitation in the framework
of the WTO and strengthen the Agreement on A Market Access Working Group (MAWG) on chemicals was set up by the Commission
Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property
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Rights. following the completion of the sectoral fiche and held its first meeting in March 2010. The
objective of this MAWG is to identify priority market access barriers specific to the chemical
sector and to agree on action and strategies to remove them, in line with the spirit of the market
access strategy as a complementary tool to multilateral and bilateral negotiations. A second
meeting took place in July 2010, during which a list of priority issues has been identified.
33 As for new accessions to the WTO, the EU should European Union
strive to ensure that trade distorting practices, The Commission pursues efforts to ensure that distorting practices of new WTO members are
such as double pricing policies for energy and effectively addressed.
feedstock by acceding countries are effectively
34 The EU should pursue Free Trade Agreements European Union
with key trading partners, in particular if these A new free trade agreement with Korea, which may serve as a model for future, modern FTAs
are so-called WTO plus agreements that go has been finalised. It will significantly liberalise access of the EU chemicals industry to its 10 th-
further in promoting openness and integration largest individual market
than is currently the case in the multilateral
negotiations. The selection of potential FTA Other ongoing negotiations, notably with Ukraine, India, Canada and Singapore are making
partners should give priority to economic criteria progress and negotiations with Mercosur have been reopened.
with due consideration given to the EU’s Policy
for Development. The EU should strive for
consistency between all FTAs and aim to achieve
conditions comparable to those granted by our
FTA partner to other key countries. FTAs need
proper enforcement and balanced and reliable
dispute settlement procedures.
35 In the absence of progress in multilateral trade European Union
negotiations, there should be no unilateral The Commission pursued its use of trade defence instruments against violations of anti-duping
weakening of the current European TDI and anti-subsidization rules, where justified, for example via anti-dumping measures extended
legislation and practice. If improvements in against Ukraine for ammonium nitrate and against the US for ethanolamines at the beginning of
current practice are considered necessary, these 2010.
could include: (1) faster implementation of
provisional measures (six months instead of the
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current minimum of nine); (2) making disclosure
of provisional findings mandatory; (3) more
severity in cases of fraud and circumvention; and
(4) consolidation of energy and other raw
materials adjustments, by allowing for
adjustments in the calculation of the ‘normal’
price to tackle dual pricing.
36 In the WTO, the EU should seek to ensure European Union
stringent common rules leading to a global level The EU continued its efforts to obtain a deal in the WTO Doha Development Agenda
playing field with an alignment of anti-dumping negotiations, which could also translate in enhanced rules on trade defence. However, progress
practices. TDIs will continue to be needed to in these talks has been so far limited.
offset the impact of unfair trade practices. This
includes measures to tackle double pricing and
below-cost pricing. However, a realistic and
balanced approach should be followed and it
must be recognised that TDIs are part of a wider
package being negotiated within the WTO.
37 The EU should continue to strive for more global European Union
harmonisation in customs procedures within the Customs-related problems and issues faced by EU operators in Russia and Ukraine are regularly
relevant international organisations such as the raised in for a such as the EU-Russia and EU-Ukraine Sub-Committees on Customs and Border
World Customs Organisation and the WTO. This Cooperation and the EU-Russia Working Group on Customs Border Issues.
will enhance the fight against black and grey
customs clearance schemes which are currently a In the EU-Russia Industrial and Enterprise Policy Dialogue, the subgroup on chemicals kept on
major problem for chemicals exporters and raising the most relevant industry concerns on custom organisation and procedures.
traders to some countries, such as Russia. The EU
should further pursue multilateral and bilateral
cooperation between customs authorities and
governmental dialogue as ways to counter illegal
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38 The EU should continue to promote the European Union
development of permanent new WTO rules In 2008 the European Commission adopted a new integrated strategy – the Raw Materials
addressing trade problems related to the Initiative177 - which sets out targeted measures to secure and improve access to raw materials for
discriminatory supply of raw materials. In the EU based on three pillars: ensure access to raw materials from international markets under
bilateral trade negotiations, the EU should the same conditions as other industrial competitors; set the right framework conditions within
continue to address trade and subsidy distortions the EU in order to foster sustainable supply from European sources; and boost overall resource
that cause problems in accessing raw materials. efficiency and promote recycling to reduce the EU's consumption of primary raw materials and
decrease the relative import dependence. Since then annual reports have been taking stock of
progress made, including with regard to chemical raw materials.
In addition the Commission completed an inventory of trade barriers in the field of raw materials
(2009), an assessment of their economic impact and took consequent actions (e.g. WTO case on
Chinese export restraints on certain raw materials key for the chemicals industry).
39 The EU should assess the competitive advantages European Union
gained by the elimination or reduction of import
tariffs and by opening import quotas for the raw The Commission is working on solutions for a stable and low cost access to bio-based raw
material inputs, including renewables, of the materials which would reflect the trade interests of the EU, would balance the needs of various
various subsectors of the domestic chemicals actors involved in the production and use of these raw materials and would also take into
industry. For environmentally and socially account sustainability aspects.
sensitive renewable raw materials, further
market opening should go hand in hand with Industry
sustainability guarantees with due consideration
of WTO rules. Wherever possible, the EU should The European Chemicals Industry Association (Cefic) has repeatedly called for improved access
strive for internationally agreed standards. to renewable raw materials at world market prices, either sourced from within or outside the EU,
which is one of the key conditions for a move towards a bio-based chemical industry.
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